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Click on any of these images for enlargements and buying information

banana leaf montage

peace lily montage (design one)

peace lily montage (design two)

cherry leaf montage

Cabbage tree montage

New Zealand flax montage (design one)

New Zealand flax montage (design two)

Starfish

about the patterns

The complexity of the natural world is ordinarily so staggering that it tends to overwhelm us. Within this complexity is a myriad of repeating forms and shapes on various scales. Our eyes naturally find these symmetries and repetitions pleasing.

Abstractions from nature and repeat patterning are the origins of many art forms.

What happens when you apply this approach to photography? There is a tension between photography and abstraction, since photography cannot generalise, but must deal with the concrete and specific. You cannot take a photograph that distills all the qualities of a leaf: you can only show one particular leaf.

So the approach I have tried is to photograph such small pieces of a object (in this case, leaves) that you notice the gradations of colour and tone more than the identity of the object. I've then used my computer to repeat these images. So the patterns I've made are entirely natural forms, shown in a highly artificial way.

banana leaf images

Above are the original images, below is the design using them.

banana leaf montage

I've found it interesting to play with these tensions between natural and artificial. I hope you enjoy the result. :-)

Rata Design, P O Box 7251, Christchurch 8240, New Zealand. email Rata Design
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